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The Ten of Them: chapter 17


In our last chapter great-great- great-great-grandpa’s treasure divided evenly among all members of the family named by Sam. The treasure was so great each and every one got more than a billion dollars. This led to some interesting things happening, the family treated JJ to a new wardrobe. JJ and the others silent partnered with most businesses in town, and even help create new ones. This created a boom in town in the local economy sprang back headed upward unlike most of the nation.

JJ and Kathryn chartered a flight and picked up Sam’s godfather, Captain Ron Davis, and just arrived back home with him and a coworker, Sergeant Reese Hansen, both friends of Sam’s late parents. Given their connection to Sam’s mother especially it is no wonder that they want to insure Sam’s well-being.



Captain Davis is impressed at first sight of our home. I noticed Marshall’s house is coming along nicely. In a few months Marshall and Misty should be making themselves at home there. Joan’s house is nearly as far along, with roof and windows installed. The brick walls are under construction in a few more days to see their completion. I point out the two homes to the Captain and explain their significance to Sam.

Sam takes Ron and Reese on a tour of her home as Alyssa and Mom are preparing dinner. Kathryn is sorting our laundry from the trip. When Sam brings them through the utility room Reese asks Kathryn, “Kathryn why don’t you hire someone to do that? I never thought a rich person with even touch their dirty laundry.”

Kathryn giggles and says, “I never thought of myself as that type of rich person. You know the really helpless ones who couldn’t survive without their money. Mom had me doing laundry since I was eight years old. It’s no big deal.”

Reese giggles too, before she says, “You definitely are not the typical billionaire most people think of.” I walk in with our laundry basket at the end of the conversation. Reese begins to giggle before Sam pulls her on to the show the rest of the house. I look at Kathryn and she only giggles before returning back to work on the dirty laundry. I began helping Kathryn sorting the laundry what we always do together. The basket is empty I go to Sam’s room to get her dirty laundry.

On my way back I happened over hear Ron asking Sam if she’s happy. Sam giggling says, “Yes, Mommy and Daddy take good care of me. Daddy and I have a lot of fun together, he taught me to swim. He loves me and Mommy a lot. Mommy and I have fun too. Mommy loves Daddy and me a lot.”

Ron says, “That’s good Sam, I’m glad you’re happy.”

Sam asks, “I want to go swimming, did you bring a swimsuit?”

Ron answers, “Sorry Sam I don’t go swimming anymore not since my injury.”

Reese says, “I brought my swimsuit Sam I will swim with you.”

Sam giggles and pulls Kathryn after her, “Mommy help me put my swimsuit on.” Kathryn giggles and scoops Sam up carrying her to her bedroom. A few minutes later Sam and Kathryn appear in our bedroom so Kathryn can change into her swimsuit. Once she has I can’t help but notice the slight bulge that is our growing child.

Kathryn sees me watching and looks down I think is the first time she too has noticed that her womb is actually beginning to show the fact that she is pregnant.

She is little more than nine weeks along now, two thirds through her first trimester. I walk to Kathryn and gently caress her tiny bulge. I pull her into a passionate kiss before telling her, “I love you more than life itself. Thank you for giving me our daughter.”

Kathryn pulls me into a passionate kiss at last a very long time until Sam’s giggling gets our attention. Once we break Sam says, “I love seeing you like that. When you kiss like that I know you love each other.”

I chuckle and say, “That’s right my big girl, I do love your Mommy.”

An idea hits me I know I can push my passion into Kathryn I wonder if our bond will let me share my emotions with her. I gently placed my hand on the center of her chest looking into Kathryn’s eyes I reach out allow my life-force to mingle with hers. Kathryn takes a sharp breath in as I can feel her love for me, her joy at our closeness. Our bond lets us share our emotions. It makes sense if we can share our lust why not all the other emotions.

Kathryn and I immediately pulled into a passionate kiss, and we are reluctant to break. Only when Reese’s voice asks, “Are you two going to kiss all day or come swimming?”

With a chuckle I say, “I just can’t get enough of her lips.”

Reese picking up Sam says, “Sam that’s what newlyweds are like.”

Sam points Reese over to the elevator and Reese raises an eyebrow as Sam pushes the button for the elevator. Kathryn giggles and says, “JJ didn’t even know I wanted a bedroom with its own elevator when he had the house designed. When he had it built I was only ten years old and I already knew this would be our bedroom.”

Reese giggles and says, “You’ve been in love with him a long time then.”

Kathryn giggles and says, “It seems like all my life.”

Sam giggling says, “It was a week before I was born you were in love.”

Reese questions, “Sam you’re only a four-year-old, Kathryn yours surely older than fourteen?”

Kathryn giggling says, “That’s right I’m fourteen and nine weeks old, and nine weeks pregnant.”

As the elevator doors open we step in Reese is silent for a long time, as the doors open again on to the family room we step out. Reese asks, “JJ doesn’t the law say you have to be sixteen or its statutory rape?”

Not knowing Reese that well I say, “We were married on Kathryn’s fourteenth birthday which is the earliest the state will allow.”

Kathryn giggling merrily says, “I’m pretty sure that’s the day I got pregnant, although the doctor thinks it was a week later.”

Sam says, “I can’t wait for my baby sister to get here. She is gonna be a lot of fun to teach how to swim.”

With a chuckle I say, “Sam it may be a couple years after she’s born before you get to teach her how to swim.”

Sam is a little sad before I say, “Sam you have to teach her how to talk and walk before you can teacher how to swim.”

Sam with a giggle says, “I almost forgot about that, there are a lot of things I will have to teach her too.”

Reese giggles and says, “Sam I was a big sister it can be a lot of fun, and a lot of hard work too.”

Kathryn giggles as she says, “We will not let Sam worked too hard, she tries to do that already. It only took her six weeks to finish the first grade requirements for homeschooling.”

Sam grumbles, “Reese, Daddy isn’t letting me start the second grade.”

Chuckling I say, “That’s right Sam. You have to have a vacation just like all the other kids do between grade levels.”

Reese giggles and asks, “Sam you really like doing homeschool?”

Sam brightens and answers, “It gives me a lot of time with Mommy and Daddy, and I like to learn new things.”

Reese asks, “Sam you love spending time with your Mommy and Daddy?”

Sam giggles and answers, “Yes I do. Mommy and Daddy like to spend a lot of time with me too. They don’t mind me coming to watch them work. Daddy was teaching a class on how to trade stocks and commodities. He still would not get mad at me for coming in setting in his lap. If he had to get up he would pass me to Mommy and Mommy would let me sit in her lap.”

With a chuckle I say, “My Princess why wouldn’t I let you set on my lap.”

Sam giggles brightly before she continues, “After lunch when I get sleepy before my nap Daddy he wouldn’t let go of me. Daddy always knew when I was getting tired. When he wasn’t busy he would read to me, or he was always there when one of my aunts would read to me before my nap.”

Kathryn gives me playful smack on my butt giggling she says, “JJ spoils Sam every chance he gets.”

Sam giggles at the two of us and says, “Daddy spoils you too Mommy. He does it because he loves us.”

I give both of them a kiss and chuckle before I challenge them to a race. “First one to twenty-five laps wins.”

As soon as Sam’s feet touched the ground I take a running dive. I am followed quickly by Sam and Kathryn, while Reese watches. Reese becomes the unofficial race monitor as she counts laps for each of us, she was a little surprised when Sam pulled in front of us on the fifth lap, where on the twenty-third lap and Sam finishes. Getting out of the pool Sam looks at Reese happily. Sam calls to me, “Hurry up Daddy I’m already done.”

The Coach laughs from the doorway and when Sam notices him she runs to him and excitedly says, “Grandpa I won a race of twenty-five laps with Mommy and Daddy.”

The Coach scoops up Sam even though she’s wet from the pool he gives her a warm hug before he says, “That’s my Princess Sam.”

Reese is watching with a bright smile. Kathryn and I watch from the pool, we turn to do our last lap.

Kathryn and I finished the race in Kathryn wins between the two of us. Giggling Kathryn says, “That’s what you get for trying to cheat and get a head start.”

With a chuckle I say, “If I didn’t have a little bit of a head start, I would still be swimming.”

I help Kathryn out of the pool, and her Dad notices immediately the tiny bulge. His eyes light up it’s one thing to see the test strip and hear what the doctor said. It’s another to see the tiny bulge in know you’re going to be a grandpa. Holding Sam he says, “You see there, Sam that tiny bulge that your Mom has now. That’s going to be your little brother or sister.”

Sam giggles and corrects her grandpa, “That’s going to be Amanda my baby sister.”

Reese asks, “Can they tell the sex this early?”

Sam says, “Daddy can, he knew about the lightning before it hit the tree.”

With a chuckle I say, “I had a premonition that Kathryn was pregnant and we’re going to have a girl.”

The coach chuckles, “That explains why you never had an intercepted pass the entire time you’re playing high school football. You have clairvoyance.”

Chuckling I say, “Possibly, or just a good quarterback and I can read the defense.”

Reese giggles and asks, “Sam you keep talking about the tree JJ knocked down with lightning. Can you show me where it was?”

Chuckling the coach says, “We saw it up and put it in the wood pile to dry out for firewood. We’ve even filled the whole back in after digging through making sure we didn’t miss anything. We do have pictures.”

I chuckle before I ask, “1.2 billion is not enough for you Dad?”

He chuckles and says, “It’s far more than enough, but I just wanted to make sure great grandpa JT’s treasure was all found.”

Reese let’s a long whistle out before she asks, “You guys found the treasure worth 1.2 billion?”

Maybe she didn’t hear on the plane about how much Sam was actually worth, but before I can answer Sam says, “Each person in the family got 1.2 billion after taxes.”

Reese says, “You guys found a treasure worth 1.2 billion for each member of the family, and you’ve got a big family Sam.”

Giggling Sam replies, “Twenty-one, I got twenty-one people in my family.”

Reese asks, “Sam what about Ron isn’t he part of your family?”

Sam says, “Ron always said he wasn’t, when I started to call him uncle before he left.”

Reese says, “So Ron cut himself out, because he didn’t want to be responsible for you.”

Sam says, “I don’t know why he would always say I’m not part of your family.”

Six of Sam’s aunts, the only two missing is Alyssa and Joan, come into the pool area in each take Sam into their arms giving her a warm hug. After passing Sam on Kathryn’s sisters give their father a warm hug and a kiss on the cheek which he returns. They always seemed a little cool to each other before and Kathryn giggles at seeing their closeness. I whisper to Kathryn a question, “What’s happened that Dad and the girls seem a lot closer?”

Kathryn moving over to hug me whispers back, “Sam, seeing Dad love on Sam made us remember we used to let him do that to us when we were little. As we got older we made Dad stop I think that hurt him. I was talking with Kara while we were in Texas, she said he finally just walked up to her and gave her a hug and a kiss. He did that to each of the girls. They hadn’t realized they would miss it that much especially when we were like nine.”

Chuckling I whisper, “You better go over there and get our hug and kiss from your father too.”

Kathryn gives me a playful bump with her hip as she started walking over to Dad. When she gets there he pulls her into a hug and kisses her on the cheek just like he did his other daughters. Smiling brightly says, “Baby girl I love you.” He drops his hand down to her bulge and gently caresses her causing her to giggle.

He pulls his hand away not wanting to tickle her. Kathryn sisters notice, they almost appear jealous for a half second until they notice the slight bulge Kathryn has. Kara steps forward and takes Kathryn into her arms giving her a little kiss before she allows herself to caress the bulge too. This is repeated for each of her sisters, MC and Misty also. I can’t help but notice Misty has a bulge as well. Marshall walks in. I chuckle and wave him over I tell him, “Watch each the girls just noticed Kathryn is showing. Have you noticed Misty is too?”

Misty seems to let her hand linger, and Kathryn looking down notices Misty’s bulge Kathryn’s hand moves to Misty’s bulge and begins to caress her as well. The two giggle merrily as the rest of the women catch on. They all give Misty a hug and a caress too.

Marshall gives me a punch in the shoulder before he says, “The doctors said March 7 for a due date.”

Returning his playful punch I say, “I would have your bags packed before the first if I was you.”

Reese asks, “That have to do with your premonition?”

I say, “Yes and no, the premonition is for Kathryn to deliver on 1 March. Misty just happens to be the same size of a bulge. There’s a good chance they’ll deliver at the same time.”

Reese says, “I guess that makes sense, you are neighbors and the girls getting pregnant at the same time. Weather has a way of triggering women to start labor. If you’re right JJ Misty has a very good chance of delivering at the same time. First babies have a tendency to either be a week or two either side of the due date.”

Marshall says, “The first of March or the 7th isn’t that much of a difference. I’m sure we’ll have the bags packed just in case.”

Marshall chuckles and asks, “You see the house? It’s coming along really good; the brick we picked for the siding was available. Joan had to wait a week on hers that’s why mine is finished before hers. On the interior everything is nearly complete, the insulation is going in right now. Once that’s finished the drywall starts going up. Coach’s foreman said will be finished before Christmas on both my house and Joan’s. MC should be done by Valentine’s Day.

MC hearing someone speaking about her turns to us, she with a sexy sway to her hips walks over and gives me a hug. She asks seductively, “JJ, are you going to mind if I stay until they finish my house?”

Chuckling I say, “MC you know we adopted you. Family always stays together, no I won’t have you leaving until your house is finished.”

MC goes over to Kathryn gives her a hug and a kiss and says, “Told you he would not notice it, the man only has eyes for you.”

The truth is I did notice that MC had come onto me. I just played it off like my sisters-in-laws teasing me. Sometimes I think it is Kathryn testing me now. Maybe she’s a little insecure knowing her body would change because of her pregnancy. I love her more now than ever, and my love for her seems to grow every day.

Sam comes up and asks, “Daddy want to play swimming tag?”

With a chuckle I say, “Okay Sam let’s play tag. I tag Marshall saying loudly, “You’re it.” Sam and I dive into the pool and swim away before Marshall who dives in after me. Since the game started out of the pool Marshall can tag me. As soon as he does I try to get Sam who giggles and swims away. It doesn’t take long for the rest of the family to join in. Even Reese gets into the pool and is tagged by Sam. Reese catches Kara and her fingers get caught in the strings of her bikini she accidentally removes Kara’s top. Kara quickly grabs it but we all noticed the love bites on Kara’s breast. Her sisters tease her about them.

Kara returns, “So what if Daniel does like giving me love bites on my breast.” Her statement was met with giggles from her sisters.

The Coach groans before he turns and leaves. I was a little puzzled by his reaction, but I think I can understand it. With Kathryn he had quite a while to get used to the fact we were a couple. Daniel and Kara had only been a couple for just over two months. Kathryn and I were together over two years before we had sex, and engaged over seven months. Kara isn’t even engaged to Daniel yet, and looks like they’re having sex. I think the coach is just being protective, but he also knows Kara is old enough to make that decision on her own. Maybe there’s something else going on, I guess I should ask.

Once I tag someone else, Kara just got me. I don’t have to ask right now anyway, it may be best to let him think it over first. I swim toward my two favorite targets and dive under the water seems to be my best chance to catch them unaware. It doesn’t work this time and I turn quickly and caught Marshall. When I surface he playfully splashes me. With a chuckle I say, “You’re still it.”

Marshall swims off trying to catch the nearest target which is Sam, Sam easily out swims Marshall, the girl is very fast now. I’m resting on the side because Marshall is unable to tag me and until he does tag someone I don’t have to worry.

We play in the pool for another half an hour. I got tagged three more times, let me get Kathryn once, and Sam once plus I caught Kara too. After we were out resting I had a chance to speak to Kathryn about how her father reacted earlier. I asked if she knew anything or any reason he would act that way. I knew her brothers used to give me a hard time when Kathryn and I first started dating. But when they saw how protective I was of Kathryn they backed off. Course it could’ve been the several times I threw them on their ass when I was training with them. Now all three of the brothers are fairly decent with the type of martial arts I trained. They know I can throw them on their ass if I want to, they also know I would do anything to protect Kathryn and Sam, as well as the rest of the family.

After Kathryn thought about it she said, “Dad really has always been that way, even with you. I think it took the bear to let him know just how you really felt about me. He knows that you would give your life to protect me if that’s what you needed to do.”

I hug Kathryn and tell her, “Of course my love, you mean more to me than anything. You know I’ll do anything to keep you, Sam, and our baby safe.”

Giggling Kathryn says, “You’ve already prove that to the family a couple times over. We know that’s not idle talk, the problem is that he doesn’t know that about Daniel. If Daniel would be is willing to put himself on the line for Kara. Dad has known Daniel for a long time, he was a quarterback when he went to school and coached by Dad.”

With concern I ask, “Does he have a good reason to feel this way?”

Now with the new giggle Kathryn says, “About you yes. I’m not sure about Daniel he may or may not have a reason.”

I give Kathryn a hug and then say, “I don’t ever want to see Kara hurt, if Dad has a good reason to act like he doesn’t want them together. Kathryn, I don’t know what we will do, because I love your sisters and never want to see them hurt or upset and definitely not upset with me.”

Kathryn giggles and says, “They all know that. They all know that you’re trying to do your best to look out for them just like you look out for Sam and me.”

Dinner was ready shortly after that, Kathryn, Sam and I had showered and dressed. Sam missed her nap so little after dinner she lay down for a half hour. Kathryn joins her taking a nap too and I went to find the Coach for a talk. I still wanted to find out what was going on.

I found him out in the shed, he was fiddling with the tractor he was working on the first day I met him. It seems like any time he is upset that’s where we can find him. Walking up to him I say, “I know you really can afford a new one you just like working on this old piece of shit.”

The Coach chuckles and says, “I know I can afford a new one. But this one isn’t dead yet and don’t call my tractor a piece of shit.”

Chuckling I say, “Sorry for that Dad.” I started calling him Dad a lot more often. He doesn’t seem to mind, and when I do, he knows I need or want to talk about something. Now that I have his attention I ask him, “I saw your reaction to what Kara said today. I was just wondering is it because you don’t trust Daniel, or is it something else?”

After taking a deep breath he says, “It was that obvious. Kara in some ways is a lot younger than Kathryn, not by the calendar of course. Even though Kathryn is my baby girl a long time ago I realized she’s more mature than her years. Of all my daughters Kathryn is the most mature, some would say an old soul. I am afraid that Kara is going to get hurt. I’ve known Daniel for a decade now, he still seems like the young man I first met. Of course he is older and his body is full-grown now but he still seems almost the same maturity level. When he was younger he went through a lot of girls, usually treated them all the same. I overheard him and my son talking when he was only fourteen and give Michael Junior some advice on girls. He told Michael, never get too serious about a girl, she will break your heart if you do. When you can mark the girl do it, that way if any other guy sees the marks he knows she has a boyfriend. A lot of guys will mark the girl again in a different spot, that’s what I do it that way the guy knows she’s cheating.”

I ask, “So you think Daniel doesn’t my hurting her, because he doesn’t care that much about her?”

The Coach shakes his head yes before he says, “I know Kara had a crush on him before he went off to college. Her brothers would not let Daniel try anything, but I think he wanted to. It’s not the age difference that bothers me. It is the way he always treated girls that’s upsetting me.”

If I’d known this in the past I would not have been so happy that Kara was with Daniel. I know she was miserable having a crush on me, she knew I wouldn’t cheat on Kathryn in any fashion. I know she respected that because of all of Kathryn sisters Kara was the one who hardly ever teased me. I’m still hoping her and Daniel will be good together, Kara seems to be happy with him. Maybe if I can talk to Daniel and find out how he really feels about Kara. If he truly loves her, I can set Dad’s mind at ease and mine too.

The Coach goes back to work on the tractor and I like always I give him a hand helping where I can. The hay will need cut soon so will need the tractor running to do that. The coach’s hayfield was always a source of extra income for him, his high school coaching position barely kept food on the table for the ten of them. Now that he really doesn’t need to have that income I’m not sure why he’s going to cut the hay other than just to keep the farm in good condition.

When you abandon a hayfield, it tent to go wild in just a couple seasons. Saplings will start up on the edges of the field sometimes in a single season. Squirrels hiding the nuts in the tall grass of the abandoned hayfield are the most likely reason for the spread of trees into the field. Abandoned fields also are a fire hazard the hay being highly combustible if it’s still standing and dry, so there’s a number of reasons why to go ahead and cut it other than the extra income.

I do want to know why he needs to cut it. I ask, “You plan on cutting your hayfield soon?”

The Coach says, “Yes, I want a little hay up for Sam’s Christmas present I’m planning on getting her.”

Now my curiosity really is running wild and I think he can see so Dad continues, “I want to get Sam a pony for Christmas. She’s at the age where all my girls started to ask for one, but I never was able to. I’ll have to set down talk to each girl before I do buy the pony. Of all my daughters Kathryn was the easiest to explain to when she was four and a half years old. That’s when I knew she was more mature than her sisters. You think living on a farm I could afford a pony for them, but I needed to sell the hay before. Oh by the way, thank you for helping out on every one of the cuttings since you moved in. It is things like that, that make you who you are. It also made me realize that you and Kathryn were meant for each other. She’s just like you in a lot of ways.”

I remember back to my first time helping with the hay, the hay bales only way seventy pounds each but there several thousand of them that need to be stacked first onto the truck then into the barn. It wasn’t a big deal to help out, especially once Kathryn started trading with me. It was only for a couple days usually only two possibly three times during the summer. It turned out to be a pretty good way to stay in shape along with the weights and running.

I chuckle and say, “If you give Sam a pony, I know what I am getting Kathryn for her next birthday.”

The Coach laughs and says, “That would be a saddle, because I am buying all the girls horses for Christmas.”

I chuckle and say, “In that case I am definitely helping you with the hay. I want to get the tackle if that isn’t already decided.”

The Coach informed me, “Sorry, Helen already has that picked out, a different one for each of the girls. The only one she’s not buying is Kathryn’s saddle she said she didn’t want to tempt Kathryn into riding until after the baby. She said she gave her an IOU for the saddle.”

With a laugh I say, “I guess I will end up building a new stable, yours is just a little small for the eight to twenty horses we will end up with.”

Getting a slightly confused look the Coach asks, “Twenty?”

With a chuckle I say, “You do know how many kids will be around here soon. Marshall and Misty are expecting. Kathryn and I plan a large family. Joan had four bedrooms added to her home for her kids. MC is still young enough to want children. Plus I want a horse. I don’t want Kathryn and Sam to ride alone. I’m sure Marshall would want one too. Even if we shared a few horses that still going to be more than you have the room for now.”

Chuckling the coach says, “Why do you think I haven’t gotten one yet. With horses you just don’t have one not with as many kids as I have.”

After their nap Kathryn and Sam find me still helping with the tractor, although we were just about done. Sam watches as I help her grandfather, Kathryn begins telling Sam about the first day we met, and how she keeps my secret about how much money I make. Kathryn almost laughed hysterically telling Sam about how I got her brothers to stop teasing her about her name. Sam looks at me before she says, “Daddy you really didn’t hurt my uncles did you?”

The Coach answers before I could say anything, “Only their pride Sam, and it was something they needed.”

Sam giggles at that, and Kathryn continues the story. When Kathryn gets to the point where she’s talking about our first kiss she looks at me before she says, “Sam the first time I kissed your Daddy I knew he was going to be my husband and we were going to be together for all our lives.” Her finger goes to her necklace and gently runs across it.

Looking into Sam’s eyes I say, “I knew that too Sam. That I was going to marry your Mommy and be very happy.”

The coach chuckles and asks, “That talk you had with me, when you ask if you could date Kathryn you already knew you were going to marry my daughter?”

Looking him straight in the eye’s I say, “Yes Dad I knew then, but I didn’t want to sound like I was crazy.”

The coach chuckles and says, “Somehow part of me knew what you were really asking.”

Kathryn continues, “Sam that was the day your Daddy gave me my necklace just before my tenth Birthday. Even though Sam we knew would spend the rest of our life together we waited a long time to make love, even though we knew it would be all right because we will be together forever. JJ waited until I was ready.”

The Coach chuckles, “More importantly he waited until I was ready to deal with it. He already asked Kathryn to marry him, and I gotten accustomed to the idea of them being together forever.”

Smiling the Coach asks, “Sam you remember the story about the bear?” With a big grin Sam shakes her head yes. The Coach continues, “I knew right then after I got the phone call from your Aunt Michelle that JJ, your Daddy would always be part of this family. Michelle was in tears as she told me how JJ risked his life. That he was likely hurt or killed to have saved her and her sisters. When she said they were fine and were there. I never thought I have driven so fast in my life to get to my Mom’s house. When I got there JJ had already left. Michelle and Kathryn told me the story about the bear. Kathryn told me how he stood between his family and the bear. I knew right then they would be married, I can see the love and pride in Kathryn as she told me about JJ.”

Kathryn pointed out to her father, “Well JJ had already asked for me to marry him.”

The Coach chuckles as he remembers. Addressing Kathryn and I he says, “Until that point I thought the two of you would have a fight and break up like most young couples do. After that I realized how deeply JJ truly felt about you Kathryn, and how you truly felt about him. That’s when I and your mother truly accepted your engagement and marriage. That’s also when we started planning your wedding.”

Kathryn gives me a hug that Sam joins in on. Giggling Sam says, “My Daddy is a real hero.”

A warm laugh draws our attention to the doorway where Ron and Reese stand with Uncle George and Alyssa and Joan. Crossing the floor Ron says as he stands in front of me, “When I first learned a little about you, and heard the stories Sam and Kathryn told I was a little more than skeptical. I realize something now, those stories were true and you really are a hero in your own right. Nancy’s daughter is in good hands.”

Reese smiling steps up alongside him and she reaches out her hand to me, she shakes my hand and says, “I do agree, and I see how much you love Sam and how much she loves you in return. I owe Nancy my life and I’ll always do whatever it takes to protect Sam. I know now that you would do that out of love for her.”

Sam reaches for Reese and Reese takes her into her embrace and Sam gives her a kiss on her cheek which Reese returns. Then Sam reaches for Ron and Reese passes Sam to Ron and Sam gives Ron a kiss on his cheek and Ron returns Sam’s kiss. Sam hugging her godfather says, “Ron, if you want to get out of the military Daddy can help you and Reese. He helped Uncle Marshall, Aunt Misty, Aunt MC and Aunt Joan before we found the treasure. He can do the same thing for you, can’t you Daddy?”

With a smile I say, “If that’s what Ron wants I will help him to retire.”

Ron has a questioning look so I continue, “The classes Sam talked about how I helped Marshall, Misty, MC, and Joan to learn how to trade using the Internet. I instructed them on how to research and identify stock for potential profit, stability in return for a long-term investment. Also we delved into commodities trading for profit.”

Ron and Reese had a so what look which start Joan to giggling. She says, “JJ teaches it hands-on, you actually train every day the markets are open making profit, over three months I learned how to make sixty-five million dollars.” Their previous underwhelm expression has been replaced by OMG expression.

Kathryn laughs at the sudden change of expressions and says, “JJ was a billionaire at age sixteen now that he turned eighteen he had two billion before his share of the treasure. I think he was going to teach everyone in the family to trade eventually.”

With a chuckle I say, “I would gladly teach each and every one how to trade, but no one other than Kathryn seem to be interested.”

The Coach chuckles and said, “They didn’t want to get between you and Kathryn in the two of you trading seemed like you were having such a good time doing that.”

Kathryn laughs brightly and says, “It was always fun to be with JJ for me. No matter what we were doing my husband always let me know just how much he loves me. Now we have Sam together, and I see his heart seems to grow with love each and every person he brings into his life.”

Joan steps forward wraps me in a hug kisses me on the cheek she says, “JJ has made me his sister. His father by saving my Mom’s life saved my life before I was even born. I just wish JJ’s Dad didn't have to die to save my Mom, but that connects us. JJ’s father became my Mom’s guardian angel.”

Alyssa steps forward and wraps me and Joan in her arms she says, “JJ stepped in to my life, my ex-husband had just lost his second job, and I was laid off also. That’s when he moved out here, instead of selling the house in California JJ had my ex-husband and me watch over it. He paid us way too much to do that. I realize now it was to get Joan and Johnny out of the neighborhood we were in. He insisted on sending them to a private school to keep them out of the public schools. When my ex-husband filed for divorce JJ made available his lawyers in California for me. When I needed to go he paid for the air fare, and the hotel, a five-star at that, and his Mom comes with me, without her I don’t think I could’ve gone through that. He was training Joan how to trade in one day he made her a millionaire. JJ your Dad may be my Guardian Angel, but you are his hands.”

Sam giggles and asks, “Aunt Alyssa, are you talking about Angel Grandpa Joseph?”

I don’t think anyone ever called my Dad Joseph but my Mom. I know I never told Sam that in the only one that possibly could have would be my mother and I am pretty sure she didn’t, but I will ask. From the look on Alyssa’s face she has no idea what Sam is talking about. So I asked Sam, “Sam did my Mom tell you what she used to call my Dad?”

Sam shakes her head no and says, “Angel Grandpa Joseph said that’s how you will know he is real.”

A quick look around the room and every face is as confused as Alyssa’s so I tell them, “Mom used to call Dad Joseph, even though that was his middle name. Mom also was the only person as far as I know to call him Joseph.”

Sam continues, “Angel Grandpa Joseph is very proud of Daddy. He says Daddy is doing very well. That’s why I’m here. He knew you would take care of me. He got together with Angel Mommy and Daddy and helped bring us all together.”

Alyssa says, “If anyone deserves wings it would be John Joseph Meyer, senior.” I smile at her knowing her words carry a double meaning. I’m unsure if I truly deserve wings, but I hope I don’t have to find out any time soon.

Reese asks, “Tell me about JJ’s father, how he saved you Alyssa?”

Alyssa begins, “A little over fifteen years ago now when I was pregnant with Joan I was driving on the LA freeway, when all of a sudden a multiple car crash happened. It all happened so fast. The collision knocked me unconscious as my car struck others and struck from behind. The next thing I know I was in an ambulance with a fireman. He told me I was very lucky to be alive, but wouldn’t tell me how I got in the ambulance.

It wasn’t until later I found out that JJ’s father had rescued me from my burning car. He rescued six others before he reached me. He was carrying me through the wreckage when he saw an oncoming car. He tossed me I’m not sure exactly how far at least two car lengths and I landed on the fireman that’s why he was in the ambulance with me. JJ’s father didn’t have time to clear the wreckage before that oncoming car slammed into it. He was trapped and killed, but he saved me and my baby.”

Ron asks, “JJ how old were you when this happened?”

With a sad smile I say, “I was just a little over three years old, when it happened. That was a bad day, I had a bad cold and when my Dad came in to say goodbye I sneezed all over him. He had to change his jersey before he could leave.”

Reese asks, “JJ do you feel guilty because of that? You are only a toddler at the time.”

With pride in my father I say, “No, even though that might have delayed him keeping him out of the accident. He arrived on the scene and managed to stop and not be in the accident. My Dad followed his heart and immediately went to help. He was the type of person who wouldn't stand by and not help. My Dad saved Alyssa because he had too. It wasn't in him to do any less. He was always a hero to me too.”

Alyssa says, “My hero and my Guardian Angel, I hope he really knows how truly grateful I am.”

George wiping a tear from his eye says, “Me too.” He moves to Alyssa side and places his arm across her shoulders and she cuddles into him.

The next couple days go by quickly, Ron and Reese spent a good deal of time with Sam. That following Monday at breakfasts I ask, “Ron, Reese, have you thought about my offer on training you how to trade?”

Ron chuckle before he says, “You were serious? I would love to.”

Reese says, “I was going to reenlist after my leave, that means vacation, but if I managed to make enough money I could turn down my reenlistment.”

Ron asks, “We only have three weeks left, you think we can make a million each?”

Marshall and Misty were there and they crack up looking at each other. Ron has a wounded expression until Marshall explains, “JJ did that for his first-class in two days. You have enough time to make about twenty million if you work at it every day there is trading.”

I tell Ron, “I helped them do that, that same two days because I could invest more I made over fifteen million. I’ll make you a deal I don’t want you to use of all your vacation time on trading in our class. We’ll use this week to get you over five million each. After you leave the military we will finish our class will get you to where I had the others at, so you can retire and draw million a year in dividends after taxes.”

Ron and Reese look at each other and slowly break into a broad smile before they look back to me. Ron says, “Deal. I will gladly return and work as long as it takes to get there.”

Reese giggles before she says, “Oh, me too!”

It’s still an hour before the markets opens so I get them up and start their accounts were going to buy some commodities that I’ve researched, along with Marshall and Misty. They will be helping this week fifteen minutes into our class Sam comes and sits on my lap. Like always Sam is very well behaved and doesn’t interrupt as I teach Ron and Reese. Kathryn comes in and gets Sam to take her down to do laps. Sam points out before she leaves that we should buy corn, Ron chuckles and waves as Sam leaves. We’ve been trading and slowly have built up their capital nearly half a million by early afternoon. I know the agriculture report doesn’t come out for two days. Most of the commodity brokers rely heavily on it, but I don’t. I do my own research and usually could predict what the agriculture report from USDA will have up to fifteen or twenty days before it. Sam is absolute right on the corn. It was a bad year over most of the Corn Belt, too cool or too wet at the very first the planting season, the growing season was dry and cool and as a result the harvest will be light this year. Corn prices should rocket on this news.

The trick is not to buy too early and tip our hand revealing what we believe. Besides that I want to get them to point where they can put half a million in corn that’s it easily turn into five million just in a day. I see corn prices are on the rise, having them sell everything else they have more than a half-million needed I have them buy corn, and I pick up two million in futures too.

Ron and Reese have a questioning look like I just paid attention to a four-year-old. I explained my research, which I did when Sam was on my lap most of the time. Explain I also bought a million in futures for Sam along with my own. Sam probably could easily trade, make it decent living working one or two weeks a year. I explained to them were done for the week except for selling on Wednesday afternoon and we can set an automatically sale. I show them how to do that. You still have fifty thousand in cash if you want to learn a little more.

Ron chuckles before he says, “You mean is this easy. If you outthink the USDA and correct about it, you can make five or six million a week.”

I point out to Ron, “You remember it isn’t that easy. You need to know about corn like a farmer does, you need to know that three degrees difference in temperature over a week’s time will make the difference in a great harvest, or average one. The difference in how long it will take for the corn to set if it’s planted late, and what the weather was like over that timeframe. If you have heavy rain not enough pollen will make it from ear to ear. Bees that produce honey from the corn pollen are a great indicator. That honey production was down this year, a good indication the corn didn’t set the kernels very well.

Marshall says, “Having a few friends that live throughout the Corn Belt and asking them how their weather and crops are doing isn’t a bad idea. I have a few Facebook friends, and ask them about their crops, we trade information back and forth, they also buy commodities and we give them a heads up on the cotton crop. I don’t just trust one person. I get a lot of information from several.”

Misty says, “I take the information Marshall gets, correlate it with whether information, that way we get a bigger picture from just a few people. We also can figure out if it’s going to be a local event or a regional one. In short there is a lot more work behind a commodity buys then just taking a cheap one hoping it goes higher. You have to do your due diligence on any commodity or stock to actually make money.”

Reese asks, “How do you guys keep track of all this?”

Marshall and Misty say in unison, “JJ and Kathryn.” Marshall continues, “They both have memories that let them access all this information faster than any supercomputer. They’re both natural wonders like that.”

With a chuckle I say, “We’re not the only two people in the world like that. As a matter of fact Sam also has that type of memory. That’s how she knew corn would be a great buy.”

Reese giggling says, “Remind me never to promise Sam something lightly she will never let me forget it.”

I ask, “Reese what did you promise my daughter?”

With a giggle she says, “I promised her I would teach her how to shoot a rifle.”

I raise an eyebrow before I say, “You do know I’ll make her wait until she is at least twelve, before you have to fulfill that promise, and yes Sam will not let you forget it.”

Reese groans before she says, “That’s eight years from now. I’m not sure I will remember how to shoot in eight years.”

Ron chuckles before he says, “She remembers what I told her when she was only two. I’m sure she will remember what you promise last Friday. Besides that I seriously doubt you forget how to shoot, Ms. Anny Oakley, you know you qualified expert every time.”

Reese finally giggles and says, “Just being able to hit a paper target isn’t all that is involved. There is a lot of safety and more importantly knowing when there’s no other option than to shoot.”

I tell Reese, “That gives me eight years to teach her that. By the time you teacher how to shoot her martial arts will be deadly from about age nine on.” I lift my shirt and show the couple bruises that still linger and say, “Those are from about ten days ago. Sam’s gotten better at pulling her punches.”

Ron seeing bruises asks, “Sam really did those?”

With a chuckle I say proudly, “She’s very fast, and stronger than she looks. When she gets a little more size on her, she will be throwing around football players if they bother her.”

Ron asks, “You really think so. Like Kathryn or Misty could do that if you train them.”

Misty giggles before she says, “JJ train me in basic self-defense. I can put Marshall on the ground any time he gets out of line.”

Ron looks at the two of them, Marshall is your typical linebacker about six foot three and two hundred and ten pounds of muscle. Misty is a petite young woman of seventeen and you would assume any physical conflict between the two would be one sided and all Marshall. Marshall and I both know better my basic class in self-defense would probably get most of them a green belt but most likely I would put Misty at Brown if I had to choose based on the experience she has.

Marshall chuckles looking at Misty he says, “Misty you know I would never give you any reason to put me on the ground. First of all I love you and I will not do anything to ever hurt you. Second I’m not stupid I seen what JJ students can do. It was funny as hell when Kara was throwing around that Lineman that grabbed her. He had probably close to eighty pounds on her and she was tossing him around like a ragdoll.”

With a chuckle I told Ron, “Ron, Kara could easily get a black belt if I have the certifications to give it. I train self-defense at our local high school, and have since I started there is a student. Kara has taken two of my classes, as her physical education. Next year she’s already signed up for the advanced classes I will be giving.”

Ron asks, “I guess that means you are multiple black belts?”

I state flatly, “Yes I am, and in two disciplines.”

Marshall chuckles and says, “Before you challenge JJ to a fight ask him to break a few two by fours.” Marshall was in the crowd when that smart mouth backed down.

Reese giggles and asks, “I love to see this, JJ how many two by fours can you break?”

I shrugged my shoulders and say truthfully, “The last time I was breaking two by fours was about four years ago. At the time I could break five.”

Marshall points out, “There is a lot of scrap lumber around here right now want to see if you can do six?”

Chuckling I say, “Not really, if you don’t get it just right you can break your arm, hand and fingers.”

Marshall chuckles at my response and asks, “Why did you do it before?”

I point out to him, “If you remember that knucklehead wanted to fight me. It was a lot better breaking four two by fours then his head.”

Chuckling Marshall says, “Yes that ended most of the tough guys trying to see if they are tougher than you.”

Kathryn says, “Of course when I told people about the bear, them knowing you could break all those two by fours before made it believable.” Kathryn has a very tired Sam and she sets her in my lap. Sam puts her head on my chest and closes her eyes. I hadn’t realized it but it was time for Sam’s nap, I hold Sam close and let her fall asleep. We are basically done for the day after buying the corn. I whisper, “Class dismissed.”

Reese smiles at me watching me pet on Sam, I walk over to the bed with Sam. Sam wakes up as soon as I lay her down, and she has a pleading look I know what she wants. Sam hasn’t got to sleep on my chest in a while. I lay down with Sam. She climbs up on my chest and goes back to sleep. I let my hand gently caressed Sam’s back which relaxes her. Reese takes one long look, giving me a smile as she walks over to the elevator with Ron, Marshall and Misty. As the doors close I hear Reese say, “I used to sleep on my Daddy’s chest just like that.”

Kathryn slides in beside us and her arm goes crossed Sam’s shoulders. Sam and Kathryn are softly breathing and the quiet of the room soon has me drifting off as well.
16 comments

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